Purcell: Songs & Dances

Purcell: Songs & Dances

by François Lazarevitch

CD

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Overview

In a recital of songs and instrumental dances, countertenor Tim Mead and Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien, under the direction of François Lazarevitch, present a varied and well-rounded portrait of Henry Purcell, the Baroque genius who was nicknamed the "English Orpheus." For this 2018 Alpha release, Mead and Lazarevitch provide idiomatic and historically informed interpretations that offer a seemingly improvisational but precisely notated approach, both in the profuse ornamentation in the vocal part and the florid repartée of the mixed consort. The ensemble consists of recorders, oboes, bassoon, and strings, with a basso continuo of viol da gamba and harpsichord, and the addition of harp and cittern lend the music a Celtic flavor. The theatrical aspect of the songs is conveyed in Mead's virtuosic and intensely focused singing, which is well supported and full sounding, and his voice seems quite robust and far from breathy. The energetic playing of Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien keeps the program engaging and fresh, even in the most familiar pieces, such as the "Pavan in G minor," the "Fantazia upon a Ground," and the "Chaconne" from "The Fairy Queen," which all display vigorous rhythms, distinct parts, and elaborate filigree. Yet Mead's performance is central to the success of this album, emphasizing the dramatic and highly expressive nature of Purcell's songs, reminding the listener that they originated on the stage. Sample "Fairest Isle" from the semi-opera "King Arthur," one of Purcell's best-loved songs and perhaps the most affecting track of the program.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/12/2018
Label: Alpha
UPC: 3760014194191
catalogNumber: 419
Rank: 58380

Tracks

  1. Amphitryon, or, the Two Sosias, incidental music, Z. 572: Minuet - Hornpipe - Boree

    1. Minuet - Hornpipe - Boree  (03:44)
  2. Come ye sons of art away (Birthday ode for Queen Mary), for soloists, chorus & instruments, Z. 323: Strike the Viol, Touch the Lute

    1. Strike the Viol, Touch the Lute  (03:40)
  3. O solitude, my sweetest choice, song, Z. 406  (05:21)
  4. Pavan for 3 violins & continuo in G minor, Z. 752  (04:38)
  5. Welcome to all the pleasures (An Ode for St. Cecilia's Day), for soloists, chorus & instruments, Z. 339: Here the Deities Approve

    1. Here the Deities Approve  (04:22)
  6. The Old Bachelor, incidental music, Z. 607: Hornpipe

    1. Hornpipe  (02:16)
  7. Work(s): Love's Goddes Sure Was Blind (Birthday Ode for Que

    1. Love's Goddes Sure Was Blind (Birthday Ode for Queen Mary), Z.331: May Her Blest Example Chase / Su  (03:11)
  8. King Arthur, or, The British Worthy, semi-opera, Z. 628: Fairest Isle

    1. Fairest Isle  (04:19)
  9. King Arthur, or, The British Worthy, semi-opera, Z. 628: What Power Art Thou

    1. What Power Art Thou  (02:46)
  10. The Virtuous Wife, or, Good Luck at Last, incidental music, Z. 611: Aire

    1. Aire  (01:10)
  11. 'Twas within a furlong (from "Mock Marriage"), song, Z. 605/2  (03:14)
  12. Amphitryon, or, the Two Sosias, incidental music, Z. 572: Scotch Tune

    1. Scotch Tune  (02:05)
  13. If ever I more riches did desire, song for 2 sopranos, tenor, bass, 2 violins & continuo, Z. 544: Here Let My Life With As Much Silence Slide

    1. Here Let My Life With As Much Silence Slide  (03:04)
  14. Fantasia upon a ground, for 3 violins (or recorders) & continuo in D major/F major, Z. 731  (04:46)
  15. Hail, bright Cecilia (Ode for St. Cecilia's Day), for soloists, chorus & instruments, Z. 328: 'Tis Nature's Voice

    1. 'Tis Nature's Voice  (04:49)
  16. The Married Beau, or, the Curious Impertinent, incidental music, Z. 603: March

    1. March  (01:30)
  17. Timon of Athens, semi-opera, Z. 632: Curtain Tune

    1. Curtain Tune  (04:19)
  18. The Indian Queen, semi-opera, Z. 630: Song Tune: We the Spirits of the Air

    1. Song Tune: We the Spirits of the Air  (01:42)
  19. The Fairy Queen, semi-opera, Z. 629: One Charming Night

    1. One Charming Night  (02:15)
  20. The Fairy Queen, semi-opera, Z. 629: Chaconne

    1. Chaconne  (02:48)

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